In devastating news (that reminded us very much of the Gene Rogers case our office prosecuted) Atria Senior Living which owns (Atria Park at San Mateo) is likely liable for elder neglect and abuse for actions that led to the death of a 93-year-old woman that the facility served dishwashing liquid.
These incidents that may seem like a “mistake” are oftentimes indicators of an untrained, overworked, and unsupported staff. Atria said to CNN: ““We can confirm three of our residents were recently transported to the hospital after mistakenly being served dishwashing liquid as drinking juice.” An understaffed facility will often have caregivers that are hurried, exhausted, overworked and tasked with the impossible.
In 2021 public records indicate that Atria Park of San Mateo had complaint investigations conducted by the Department of Social Services substantiated against them related to a worsening pressure injury at Atria Park of San Mateo.
The DSS found: Based on the Department’s investigation of medical records, staff interviews, and medical interviews the following came forth: On 3/26/20, the Health Care Agency started wound care on a Stage 2 wound. On 4/6/20 LVN noted progression to Stage 3, which is a prohibited health condition, and notified the administrator. However, [Atria Park of San Mateo failed to submit an] exception request to retain the resident…, and the Atria Park of San Mateo failed to seek higher level of care. On 4/17/20 it was noted that resident had two wounds that were unstageable. The available information shows that the home health nurse notified Atria of San Mateo that the resident needed higher level of care for the wounds or 1:1 in order to timely attend to the needs of the resident; however, Atria of San Mateo failed to provide the necessary higher level of care, and failed to provide the 1:1 care the to meet the needs of the resident. By the time the licensee sought medical care, the wound had advanced to Stage 4. Therefore, the above allegation is SUBSTANTIATED.
Often times when you begin to look at facilities where mistakes with horrific consequences occur (such as this case which is likely to result in a lawsuit against Atria Park of San Mateo) you see patterns of conduct that lead inevitably to neglect of vulnerable, elderly residents who were promised 24-hour, individualized care.
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